BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Louisiana faith leaders will gather at the Governor’s Mansion at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 10 and ask the governor to order the Pardon and Parole Board to hold clemency hearings for prisoners on death row.
Hearing dates were planned after Gov. John Bel Edwards wrote a letter to the board asking them to consider clemency for 56 death row inmates, but Attorney General Jeff Landy asked the courts to stop them. A settlement was reached between the board and East Baton Rouge District Attorney Hillar Moore, which made the inmates ineligible for clemency hearings.
Sister Helen Prejean and Most Reverend Michael Duca, Bishop of the Diocese of Baton Rouge, will present Edwards with a letter signed by over 100 faith leaders to urge him to act and order the board to hold hearings for those on death row. A prayer vigil will also be held.
“As faith leaders, we are coming together to urge the governor to be a moral leader and to stand up for the human dignity of every person on death row and ensure they each receive a fair hearing in front of the Pardon and Parole Board,” said Dr. Susan Weishar, of the Jesuit Social Research Institute at Loyola University. “It is within his constitutional and moral authority to act swiftly in the name of justice.”